butt in chair

February 25, 2020

The honeymoon is over. It is now, as Anne Lamott wrote about the writing process, “butt in chair” (Bird by Bird)time. I feel as if I am in a tunnel, plodding forward with my head down and teeth clenched, constantly pep-talking myself to not lose focus, to not let down my guard. The only way to successfully keep up with the steady stream of learning right now is to refuse to allow myself to lose focus, even for the briefest amount of time, during the 7 hours of class each day. With the number of tests, quizzes, and assignments each day, the only way I’ve figured out to keep up is to focus all my brain cells in order to cement the information into my brain, as much as possible, while learning it. Lest I sound woe-is-me, I should clarify here that I am, in fact, rather enjoying the challenge. My nerdy side is totally jazzed about this endeavor. And my old self is discovering a new sweetness to the things I had gotten spoiled by. The time that I have to myself is now more precious than before. Weekend evenings are precious and newly-delightful. Being home for those two nights, able to prepare dinner in my kitchen and linger over wine with my husband is a beautiful thing when 5 nights of the week that time is spend in a fluorescent-lighted windowless classroom, taking bites of my Tupperware-packaged dinner in between word part quizzes and textbook-highlighting.
One fear I had, shortly after beginning this new schedule, was that I would end up abandoning pleasure reading altogether. When I get home from class, My reading brain is shot … leading to another sweet discovery, mind you: never underestimate your ability to surprise yourself; I used to think I was only good for intake come nighttime—for settling into a book until succumbing to sleep. But it turns out that now Peter and I have found ourselves enjoying a few minutes of late night chat time when we each get home from, respectively, school and work. And yes, the opposite end of that schedule shift is also affected: as I complained this morning, well past a decent “farmer” rising time, “I feel cemented to the bed.” Peter threatened to bring in a forklift. I got up.
As for that reading fear, though, what I have found now is that pleasure reading has also taken on a new sweetness. I’m still trying to decide whether to try any sort of orderly reading this year; it may be wiser to let it be purely for the sake of enjoyment. But for now I have two evenings a week in which I happily indulge in literary escapism.
This week Peter came home with one of my library requests. And this weekend I whizzed through over half of it … number 3 then in my 2020 classics. Not that I’m counting 😉


February 11, 2020



February 7, 2020

In the medical marathon I’m currently running, some parts are easier than others. Medical Terminology is pretty straightforward, given my linguistic background and, consequently, ability to figure out word roots, parts, and the like. Body Structure & Function pretty good too. Exam Room Technique has been more of a struggle, because my natural ways aren’t quite as structured as they need to be . . . I’ll get there!
One course is particularly play-time-ish for me, however: Communications. We get a spelling test each week (yes, I’m serious about my love for this :-) We also get a 5-minute journaling time, with a topic given each time. I’m not quite sure yet what the purpose of this one is, considering our coursework. But I have no complaints about the little burst of writing therapy in the middle of the 7-hour day! This is what came out of me today, given the topic: